Railhead Smokehouse rolls out a hearty menu of smoked meats in a rustically vintage, family-friendly atmosphere. Intimate dining parties can sidle up to a polished wooden four-top table, serving as a gastro-football field for tackling sandwich platters of sliced ($7) and chopped ($5.60) beef-brisket sandwich platters, accompanied by a duo of beans, potato salad, or coleslaw or a single side of french fries. Meanwhile, out on an expansive, sun-filled patio, patrons can bite into a dinner portion of barbecued ribs ($10.50) as their backsides rest on black wire-rimmed furniture that sits a few strata above aged dinosaur jerky. Customers may conclude feasting with bites of cobbler ($1.90) and sips of tea ($1.35). Railhead Smokehouse also slings a selection of reasonably priced drafts (not covered by this Groupon) to aid postmeal mouth cleansing.
Those who have visited the original Cooper's in Llano might have an odd sense of déjà vu upon arriving at the Forth Worth location. That's because the sprawling 26,000-square-foot establishment is a carbon copy of the restaurant that started it all, right down to the wafting scents of mesquite-smoked meats that have been tantalizing appetites since 1953.
Any visit to Cooper's begins at the pits, where barbecue masters hoist open large, metal doors to reveal rows upon rows of ribs, brisket, sausage, and chops—all cooked over the flavors of the mesquite coals. Once you have selected your bounty of tender chicken and succulent pork or beef ribs, head toward a counter packed with Southern sides such as corn on the cob, coleslaw, and potato salad.
Though some have trouble making it to one of the communal dining tables before digging in, those who do will be thankful to find rolls of paper towels in lieu of wimpy napkins. Lively chatter rises from the restaurant’s patio, where diners enjoy views of the Fort Worth skyline and distant rigs pumping barbecue sauce from the earth’s depths.
Cousin’s Bar-B-Q’s sauce-soaked menu teems with classic dishes made with chopped and smoked meats, plus a medley of hearty sides. Carnivorous concoctions including pulled pork ($7.99) and chopped beef brisket ($8.99) join sides such as sweet ranch beans and carrot-raisin salad, giving jaws a workout while toning tongues’ six-pack abs. Sandwiches stack one protein ($4.89) or two ($5.99), and a cavalcade of smoked meats including boneless chicken breast ($10.99/lb.) offers unadorned taste that far surpasses an all-dough pizza or an ice sandwich. Cousin’s Alliance Town Center location, known as Cousin’s Urban BBQ, boasts additional sandwiches and eclectic entrees, such as the Texican tacos plate, a border-blurring pile of chipotle-mango salsa, coleslaw, and cilantro atop brisket, pulled pork, or chicken ($7.99 for 2, $8.99 for 3).
Former IT employee Leroy Wilson used to relegate his passion for grilling up mean barbecue to company outings and house parties, until his growing fan following of friends, co-workers, and strangers with functioning olfactory senses convinced him to roll the dice and open up a restaurant. Since then, Leroy has proudly manned the grill at Wilson’s BBQ swathed in a well-earned cologne of smoked mesquite as he slow-cooks each diner’s meal over wood-fueled flames or his stacks of smoldering Monopoly money. Leroy and his staff glaze meaty morsels with ultra-secret signature sauce and seasoning recipes before heaping them on plates alongside hearty side dishes or piling them high atop sandwiches that Fort Worth Weekly praised in 2008 for their lucid-dream-inspiring flavors.
Holster's Texas Bar-B-Q's pit masters combine sweet and smoky flavors to craft their signature sauce, which drenches a variety of meats including ribs made from a family recipe. A cast of homestyle sides, such as hand-battered onion rings, complement smoked sausage, pulled pork, and beef brisket as tender as a puncture wound left by cupid's arrow. The family friendly eatery also caters to kids with chicken strips and pint-sized portions of their smoked meats.
A community institution since 1956, Vance Godbey’s all-you-can-eat Sunday buffet promotes festive feasting across four sprawling dining rooms in a historic converted ranch-style house. Spirited family gatherings and incorporeal families of spirits can refuel with as much high-quality homestyle cooking as each eater desires. Grab a juicy filet mignon or sidle up to some tender brisket meat and adorn it with a side of sweet potatoes, sautéed spinach, or buttered corn. The salad selection abounds with corn, pasta, and crabmeat, and sweets-loving patrons can munch on flaky peach cobbler or run their hands through an endless supply of banana pudding.